The New Digital Age Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen Book Review

By Paul Morris
Book Review: The New Digital Age – reshaping the future of people, nations and business.

By: Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen (Google dudes)

I’m not a big reader of books (I just read ALOT of magazine, newspaper and blog articles) however this book is one I purchased on the day of release (1 month ago; read it in a week however it’s taken me 3 weeks to put review pen to paper) as I was looking forward to it so much.


It was a disappointment.

I’m an idiot.

Life lesson = I need to read the synopsis in more detail before investing a week of my life on a book that whilst was amazingly interesting did not educate & spark my commercial imagination as I was hoping.

If you’re after a book that tells you where digital marketing is going then you will be left wanting.

If you’re after a well written book on the future trends of digital and how digital will shape the wider world then this is a great book written by 2 amazing individuals.

Key learning’s

(…are in note format and I’m no John Carey hence bear with me).

The new digital age will be about:

Digital Empowerment.

People having multiple identities in a multiple dimensional world

Collective action through technology platforms e.g. Google & Facebook will help change the world

Everyone will benefit from connectivity e.g. via access to the worlds information (which we in the developed world simply take for granted) but certainly not equally

Virtual reality and instant language translations will completely change business.

Critical thinking and problem solving will become the focus in many school systems rather than in rote memorisation as it is at present

Mobile/tablet learning systems will become hugely important to the developing world. Whilst the developing world generally has poor education systems they can empower themselves and create a much more level playing field via digital learning

Personalisation and emersion will become deeper e.g. personal TV channels and details on everything in that programme e.g. where the sweater is from that a certain bit part actor is wearing

Linked directly with my world; verified profiles and trusted authors (think Google+) will see your content float to the surface and in not following this philosophy = you risk irrelevance and life long poor Search rankings.

Online reputation management will become even more important. Companies will increasingly dilute unwanted content by super intelligently ‘spamming’ the SERPS.

Major news agencies will report less and validate more with the power of twitter and Smartphone adoption turning the population into micro news reporters.

Could cyber warfare be the next major war/ battle ground? If so between China and the USA? E.g. this could take the shape of cutting off power grids, shutting down their stock market , derailing passenger trains packed with chemicals, contaminating water supplies in major cities, etc. Cyber warfare is likely to be the next Arms Race/ Cold War (or should that be CODE WAR?!?!?!?) involving employing and training the best hacking talent.

There was allot of information in the book on how technology can turn societies upside down and tear them apart e.g. empowering terrorism, uprisings against government regimes, cyber crime, porn/ sexual abuse, etc however it can also be used for good so let’s hang onto that thought!

The book showed how positives can be gained from technology e.g. reconstruction can be so much more enhanced by technological aiding rescue efforts and then in rebuilding commerce via a healthy telecommunications sector that would promote and facilitate growth of the economy.

Additional Conclusion

What a challenging and fast paced new world we face.

And how exciting is that!

Technology and connectivity will soon be intertwined with every major challenge and solution in the world.

…And whilst looking for an image to support this post I found the following amazing video that summarises the book in pictures:

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